Beeswax

Thus ends the Epiphany season. I must say that the Book of Divine Worship's calendar is both delightful, in that it retains some of our patrimony (such as Epiphanytide, but strangely not Trinitytide), and amazingly frustrating, in that it tries to overlap or combine with the the calender of the modern Roman Rite. We would normally go into the Gesimas, but now it's on to the Fifth Sunday of the Year. Figuring out Epiphany Sundays in the BDW when Epiphany itself was on the eighth of January rather than the sixth was laborious.

So today is Candlemas in the patrimony: the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple or the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Candlemas is such an easier word to say than all that. And it rolls off the tongue and has a nice ring in the ears. Today Anglicans remember candles; and they say we're all tat and no substance!

One good contribution by Anglicans (of the pre-Reformation sort!) is that by bringing in the Feast of the Presentation from Britain to Ireland, it gave modern-day pagans plenty of material for another conspiracy theory. (Lupercalia, I'm sure, was not known by St. Cyril of Jerusalem.) Always try to look for the fun amidst the crazy. But the tradition of blessing the candles probably did come as a result of "baptizing" a pagan Roman festival, which has support from Pope Innocent XII.

 

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